chapter  31
20 Pages

Obesity and Mortality Rates

Since at least the mid-19th century there has been considerable interest and debate with regard to whether and how obesity is associated with mortality. Although a common view a century agowas thatweightswewould consider excessive today were innocuous and perhaps even desirable, case reports coupled with data from the life insurance industry suggested that excess weight and the central distribution of this weight were associated with shortened life expectancy (1).